Edge Computing: Moving from the Cloud to the Edge

With this post, I want my readers to become familiar with the concept of edge operation/edge computing. We are going to hear this a lot in the future. So here it is:

With the emergence of connected environment (IoT), the cloud is no longer sufficient to process the massive deluge of data that will be generated. Currently, cloud is used to handle the data processing related to smart objects and it might take more seconds to send the data back and forth across a centralized server or controller.

Considering that in the coming years billions of devices and applications (connected cars, IoT devices) around us are going to generate data, there is going to be a huge data traffic as well.

We are entering the age of edge computing.

It can be understood in simple words:  

With IoT-driven market, the devices are going to be smaller and more data processing oriented. The billions of connected devices will result to huge network congestion and latency issue and it might not be feasible to keep data moving back and forth to the cloud.

Therefore, the processing is being moved to the edge devices in the next-generation. This will eliminate the two issues and also improve the overall performance.

What is edge computing?

The intelligent devices will be primary in the future. Therefore, it will be necessary to have a solution that processes data closest to the source and that complements the cloud.

Edge computing allows data to be processed closer to the endpoints (machines, sensors, pumps, etc.) where the data is created. This lowers the dependence on cloud and the need to transfer the data to and from the cloud.

Source: Qualcomm

Edge computing will have an impact across industries including transportation, agriculture, healthcare, industry 4.0, energy and others. It is highly suitable for the different IoT use cases.

In order to implement the edge operation, the industry players across different verticals are developing solutions to support this function. Chip makers, software developers, security providers, product developers are investigating new solutions to power the intelligent edge.

We are fortunate to witness this evolution, where our cars, coffee machines, watches and everything will be simply connected. These edge devices will leverage the concept of edge computing and make our lives simpler. However, edge computing is not going to totally replace cloud. It is going to complement the traditional cloud-centric model. There are going to be scenarios where the cloud-based model is going to be truly significant.

Sources: Qualcomm, Rethink Reports, Ctera Networks and other industry partners

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